Wellington Phoenix officials are backing a decision by coach Mark Rudan to play an inexperienced team in last night's 5-0 defeat in Perth.
The result means the Phoenix will face Melbourne Victory in Friday's A-League elimination, a fixture Rudan openly admitted he preferred.
"I was playing like I said - to prepare for Melbourne Victory," Rudan said afterwards.
The Australian coach benched star striker Roy Krishna and first-choice goalkeeper Filip Kurto, while captain Andrew Durante was left out completely.
The lack of experience showed - a full strength Glory line-up firing 17 shots on target, compared to just three from the Phoenix.
But the Phoenix coach has the full backing of boss David Dome.
Newshub approached Football Federation Australia, but it declined to comment.
The Phoenix now head to Melbourne to play the Victory - a team they've drawn with three times already this year.
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